Landsec hits science-based targets 11 years early

Commercial real estate firm Landsec has met its verified science-based target 11 years ahead of schedule, with the company's latest quarterly energy data revealing that carbon intensity has fallen by 40%.

Landsec needs to ensure that the reduction levels remain the same for the end of Q4

Landsec needs to ensure that the reduction levels remain the same for the end of Q4

The UK's largest listed commercial real estate company announced the approval of its science-based target to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050 in March 2017. The London-based firm also committed to reducing both its energy intensity and emissions by 40% per square metre by 2030. These targets have been approved and verified by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).

The company’s sustainability manager Brendan Rouse posted on LinkedIn on Wednesday (16 October) to reveal that the latest energy data suggests that Landsec has met its 40% target.

“We just need to make sure it’s like this at the end of Q4,” Rouse posted. “Obviously, a lot of this is down to grid decarbonisation but it’s also built on a reduction of energy intensity of 19.4% over the same period. This has been achieved through hard work across the company and engaging with our customers. Lots more to do and a new target to be set so watch this space.”

While Landsec is now in pursuit of a longer-term ambition of reducing carbon intensity by 80% by 2050, the company realises the need to push for a net-zero sector.

edie recently spoke to Landsec’s sustainable design and innovation manager Nils Rage, before the company reached the milestone, who mentioned that a plan is in place to transition its buildings to net-zero in the future.

“Our ambition is to become a net-zero carbon business, and we have developed a five-step plan to deliver net-zero carbon buildings that we’ll apply to our developments,” Rage told edie.

Sector look

Multiplex Europe, the construction firm behind huge London developments including 100 Bishopsgate, increased its science-based target to account for the 1.5C ambition of the Paris Agreement in September 2019, building on a 30% target by 2030, which was approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) in February 2019.

In fact, more companies are targeting more ambitious goals, either through the SBTi or via the World Green Building Council’s (WorldGBC) call for companies in the built environment to tackle embodied carbon.

The WorldGBC issued a new report outlining how companies in the sector can focus on both operational and embodied carbon to reach net-zero emission buildings by 2050.

The report notes that operational emissions (from energy used to heat, cool and light buildings) account for 28% of the built environment sector’s 39% contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions. The remaining 11% derives from embodied carbon emissions found in the material and construction processes across a building’s entire lifecycle.

Read edie’s exclusive interview with the WorldGBC’s chief executive Cristina Gamboa here.

Landsec’s Rage also told edie that the company is encouraging its supply chain to set targets that help decarbonise the sector.

“Our true impact and opportunity to radically change lies within our wider supply chain,” Rage said. “We have a duty to take our partners with us in order to drive real, long-lasting change.

“At Landsec, not only do we expect our partners to scrutinise their own supply chains – we expect them to set themselves targets to drive action. We do this by engaging with our key delivery partners to push them to set themselves carbon reduction targets, in line with the scale of action the world needs.”


Net-zero and the built environment

edie's next webinar will outline how businesses can engage staff, consumers, stakeholders and suppliers to inspire a global movement towards net-zero emissions, with the UK Green Building Council's chief executive already confirmed as a speaker.

Taking place on Tuesday 5 November at 3pm, this webinar will explore how sustainability professionals can engage internally and externally to create a collective movement to deliver net-zero emissions by 2050, at the latest.

Register here.

Matt Mace



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